Objects: Nothing out of the Ordinary

ISBN : 9780198861195

Daniel Z. Korman
272 ページ
156 x 234 mm

One of the central questions of material-object metaphysics is which highly visible objects there are right before our eyes. Daniel Z. Korman defends a conservative view, according to which our ordinary, natural judgments about which objects there are are more or less correct. He begins with an overview of the arguments that have led people away from the conservative view, into revisionary views according to which there are far more objects than we ordinarily take there to be (permissivism) or far fewer (eliminativism). Korman criticizes a variety of compatibilist strategies, according to which these revisionary views are actually compatible with our ordinary beliefs, and responds to debunking arguments, according to which these beliefs are the products of arbitrary biological and cultural influences. He goes on to respond to objections that the conservative's verdicts about which objects that are and aren't are objectionably arbitrary, and to the argument from vagueness, which purports to show that the sort of restriction that conservatives want to impose on which composites there are is bound to give rise to vagueness about what exists, something that is ruled out by widely accepted theories of vagueness. Finally, Korman responds to the overdetermination argument, the argument from material constitution, and the problem of the many, all of which are meant to motivate eliminativism by showing that accepting ordinary objects commits one to one or another absurdity.


I Introduction

II The Arguments

III The Positions

IV The Counterexamples

V Compatibilism

VI Ontologese

VII Debunking

VIII Arbitrariness

IX Vagueness

X Overdetermination

XI Constitution

XII The Many

XIII Conclusion


Daniel Z. Korman is an associate professor in the philosophy department at the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign. He is co-editor of Metaphysics: An Anthology (with Jaegwon Kim and Ernest Sosa) and maintains the Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy entry on ordinary objects. While much of his research has focused on the metaphysics of material objects, other research interests include the philosophy of perception, debunking arguments, the nature and status of intuition, Locke on substratum, and scientific essentialism. Korman's work has appeared in such journals as Nous, The Journal of Philosophy, Philosophers' Imprint, Philosophical Studies, and Oxford Studies in Metaphysics.